Over the past year, I have created several blogs. When I create a blog, I like to make sure its pretty.
The header is the first spot your reader’s eyeballs fall, so its important to make sure it conveys the message you’re trying to deliver.
For my first few blogs, I went to fiverr and found great graphic designers to create headers for me for $5. It worked out very well. I was happy and the header was cheap.
What I started to realize was that I enjoy change.
I think its neat when I visit a blog and the header is slightly different than it was the month before.
I found myself wanting to change around my headers all the time. I could see that this could quickly become an expensive proposition rather than an affordable one.
So, I looked into other ways to create my headers.
Of course I had heard about photoshop. Apparently its a great tool, but comes at a high price. If you are an established business, this is fine, but for publishers just starting out, it is always nice to stick with FREE tools whenever possible.
Then, I discovered Gimp. I love this free tool, and am going to share a quick tutorial on how to create a header in gimp.
STEP #1: Go to Gimp.org and download the FREE software. Its quick and easy.
STEP #2: Go to File, Create New Image and the following box will show up. Put in the dimensions of your header. I used 1000px width and 110px height for the example. Note: the screenshot shows 640 and 400. I changed to 1000 width and 110 height.
STEP #3: Click where the orange arrow is pointing and choose the foreground square. If the toolbox does not show up by default, go to the Tools menu and choose toolbox. Notice the white rectangle below – this is what shows up after creating your image in step 2.
STEP #4: When you click on the foreground square, an array of colors will present themselves. You can choose anything you want by choosing from the color display on the top left or choosing from one of the rectangles below. I chose the dark purple rectangle.
STEP #6: Now its times to add text to your header, so click on the capital A (the text tool).
STEP #7: A color box will appear after clicking on text tool. Choose your color. I chose white.
STEP #8: Click on the header and a font style and size box will pop up as well as four little squares as you see on the left. The four little squares are where you manipulate the area for the text.
STEP #9: After adjusting font style and size, type in your title and tagline. I actually chose cinnamon cake, a font I downloaded from dafont.
STEP #10: Select the rectangle select tool as indicated by the orange arrow. I placed my logo on my desktop as you can see. After clicking the rectangle select tool, click on the logo and outline the image that you want on your header. Then go to edit menu and cut and paste onto header.
STEP #11: As you can see, the logo is way too big. No worries. Its easy to manipulate, as you will see with the scale tool in step 12.
STEP #12: When you click on scale tool, a grid will show on top of your image. You can then grab the sides and manipulate to the size you need. I knew that the height of my header was 110, so I made the height 108.
STEP #13: Your image will still have a moving dashed line around it until you anchor and set the image. To do this, click on the fuzzy select wand, go to layer menu and click on new layer.
There you have it, a new header. The more you play around with the gimp toolbox, the quicker the process becomes, and before you know it, you will want to change your header every few weeks because it is so darn fun. 🙂